Nerves can be your downfall and be a stumbling block in the interview process. Do you know how to force yourself to feel more confident? From power poses to confident mantras, here are our 4 tips for boosting self-esteem and assuredness before making a first impression on a potential employer:
1. Strike a Pose
Standing like a picture of confidence will trick our brain into producing levels of testosterone that actually makes us feel more powerful. According to Amy Cuddy in her TED talk on body language, your posture can make you feel big and powerful or small and insignificant.
In a study done by Cuddy, the difference of confidence and self-assuredness was wildly higher among those participants who simply stood in a powerful pose for two minutes as opposed to sitting in a low power pose.
High power poses included stances like “Wonderwoman” or “The Champion” that made the participant larger, taking on a pose that is often adopted when something great happens. It may feel slightly ridiculous to hold that pose before you head off for the interview, but on a chemical and psychological level, the brain believes it.
It is also important during your interview to avoid huddling, shrinking or hugging yourself in low power poses that will make you feel nervous and unsure. Cuddy points out that sitting and touching your neck is a very low power pose.
2. Pull out the Archives
What made you feel accomplished and proud in the past? Go read old professors comments, LinkedIn endorsements or letters of recommendation. These will remind you of large and small successes you have had, recalling the feelings of confidence that went with them. Also, write out a list of every accomplishment you have had over the years that made you proud.
3. Think Happy Little Thoughts
Repeat a positive affirmation or mantra while you are getting ready for the interview and on your way there. This can reduce your stress, slow down your wildly beating heart and keep your blood pressure low, according to the Mindful Living Network and the Stress Institute. Repeat things like, “I will succeed in this job if given the chance” and “I am confident in my ability and potential.”